What is the real issue behind all your issues? Have you ever wondered why your marriage isn’t thriving? Most of us blame our partner and keep our focus on their list of sins. My spouse has a temper. My spouse has a drinking problem. My spouse is a liar. The list goes on and on. Every item on your list may be true but are those issues the ‘root’ problem? Probably not.
The real issue: ONE BITTER ROOT of judgement.
Matthew 13:15 For this people’s heart has become calloused; they hardly hear with their ears, and they have closed their eyes. Otherwise they might see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts and turn, and I would heal them.’
Jesus is talking directly to us about the ROOT problem. Our hearts have grown hardened. In the same passage he gives us a solution.
PROBLEM: We allow one bitter root of judgement to grow in our hearts and it begins to close our eyes and ears to the truth. We then create a hardness towards others (and God) without even knowing it. We allow ‘others’ sins to shape our hearts. My sin never resolves someone else’s, it only compounds the problem. A bitter root judgement is when you judge someone who failed you or hurt you and your self-righteous judgement turns into bitterness. You may not even know you are doing it. Often that bitter root carries over into all of your relationships. It becomes your identity.
TRUTH: We are all a million light years away from God’s perfect righteousness. Our righteousness isn’t found in ‘right’ living but ‘faith’ in Jesus. Faith in Him is what makes us appear righteous before God. It doesn’t make us righteous. That means we CAN’T ever become righteous on our own, no matter how little we sin. Our sin pattern doesn’t matter. We must stop comparing ourselves to other’s sin patterns.
Jesus gives us the real answer in Matthew, he tells us to do three things.
ONE: SEE WITH OUR EYES
My prayer is that you can open your eyes to your heart and find a bitter root. Looking inward is the hardest step. It takes courage and humility to look inward. Nothing good will ever come from someone always looking at other’s sins. I can only look in the mirror to find the path to hope and healing.
TWO: HEAR WITH OUR EARS
Because we took that first step and opened our eyes to ourselves, we can now ‘hear’ God’s voice again. One time a wife told us she was convinced God was telling her to divorce her husband. She had no hope. Her heart led her down this path where God’s voice was silent and she was mistaking Satan’s voice for God’s. Because of her humility and courage she began to look in the mirror and see her own fault. She prayed that God would speak louder if it was his will for her to divorce her husband but if it wasn’t that the voice would be silenced. It was silenced. She then discovered it was the voice of Satan. She ran to the Lord and opened her heart up again to her husband and found hope, healing and full restoration.
THREE: UNDERSTAND WITH OUR HEARTS
Our hearts often follow our choices. When we choose to shut God’s voice out and close our eyes to the truth, our hearts no longer acquire an understanding spirit. Our hearts react with hardness, belligerence, rebellion and self preservation. When we courageously take that step towards Christ and allow him to reveal the truth in our own soul, we feel the fresh breeze blow in. The sky seems brighter and we begin to sense his presence. Our hearts begin to understand him and his truths. We must first open our eyes and hear his words in order for our hearts to understand. I have seen countless people sit in front of me with a hardness more powerful than steel and unbreakable. They choose to be blind and deaf. Their hearts are simply following their choices. Don’t ever let that be you.
When ever I am wounded, I know my heart is constantly wanting to go astray. I quickly look in the mirror and ask God to speak to me. I fear a hardened heart, I see it’s destruction. Do you? It holds no prisoners. It destroys the carrier along with it’s passengers.
Oh how beautiful. When we run to Abba Father, The Creator, The Comforter, great things abound. Let us run to him and fall on our knees. Nothing will bring greater miracles into your home more than repentance. Nothing will sooth the soul better than old fashioned repentance to our Lord.
It is the ultimate washing away of the heavy burden we put on ourselves. “Come to me, I will take your burdens” Jesus tells us. Leave it all at His alter. Nothing motivates God more than a man/woman being broken before Him. His mercy will flood your soul. His love will cause you to forget your pain. His power will reign in your heart. He will grab that bitter root and rip it out of your heart forever. He will pour out his healing ointment. He will work through you and touch the ones around you. He can heal the one who wounded you. He can make the sun shine again. That is who He is. That is what He does. Follow this path. Give Him a chance to show you His power.
Go and be different.
Matt and Pam